How to Easily Carve a Turkey

The table is set, guests are ready to sit down and the question of the day is about to be answered. Who is going to carve the turkey? This year, don't sneak out of the kitchen to refill your cocktail or realize you "forgot" something in the car. Raise your hand up high and say, "I'll do it." Just follow these easy steps, you'll become a carving pro.

Step 1. Gather equipment.

Sharp knives are a must. Make sure to have a chef's knife along with a boning knife. Grab a pair of tongs or a carving fork to move the turkey to the platter. Other items to have handy: a cutting board, platter, and paper towels.

Step 2. Cut the strings off legs.

Place the turkey on the cutting board breast side up. Find the string tied around the legs of the turkey.

Using the tip of your knife, remove the string.

Step 3. Remove the drumstick.

Slice in-between the breast and drumstick, making sure to cut as close to the leg as possible, until you reach the joint.

Applying pressure, cut through the joint and remove drumsticks.

Step 4. Place drumsticks on the platter.

Using your tongs, move the leg meat onto the platter.

Step 5. Separate thigh meat.

Cut through the socket joint with the tip of your knife and remove thigh meat.

Set aside.

Step 6. Remove the wishbone.

The wishbone is located at the front of the breast. Using your fingers, pull it out. Removing the wishbone will make carving the breast meat easier. Hold onto it to make a wish later.

Step 7. Slice breast off the turkey.

Position you knife along one side of the breastbone. Follow the contour of the breastbone and cut as close to the bone as possible.

While slicing, use your other hand to hold breast meat.

The meat should remove easily. If it does not, angle your knife horizontally and cut into the breast meat until you reach the cavity. Use your other hand to hold meat in place.

Remove breast from turkey. Set breast meat aside. Repeat on other side.

Step 8. Remove wings.

Using your knife, slice through the joint and remove the wing. Repeat on other side. Set wings onto the platter.

Step 9. Slice thigh meat.

With tongs, hold the thigh meat.

Using your knife, gently cut meat away from the bone.

Move to the platter.

Step 10. Slice breast meat.

Using tongs to hold the meat, bias cut the breast meat.

Slice against the grain and make sure to keep the skin attached.

Transfer cut meat to a platter.

Step 11. Serve!

Julie Meadows - Nov 20, 2017
I have found cutting the breast that way makes the breast seem dry. I don't know why. Tried it twice and prefer the long slices for taste. I even tried both on the same bird, long thin slices won. Thanks for trying though, to each his own.
bill silverbill - Nov 20, 2017
Bad job , you have much to learn about , To carve a Turkey, hate to see how you carve Prime Rib or chuck roast. And please don't touch a capon.
Pastry Chef::: silverbill
debbie young - Nov 19, 2017
This is not how my Grandpa or dad did it . As far as the legs and thigh goes they were cut off and. Left whole on the platter then the wings taken off the whitehead or breast meat laid on the platter along with other oysters .the breast meat was cut lengthwise. Your was works too But I grew up doing it this way ,we set the table the food including the whole 25 lb.turkey everyone would,sit and watch as the carving was done .

Happy Thanksgiving to all
Adrienne Boswell - Nov 19, 2017
I am really kind of shocked here. Does the person who wrote this article just throw the carcass into a pot and miss the most tender, flavorful part of the entire bird? Seriously? Those two most wonderful parts of the bird, usually cooks' treats, the two oysters and the "Pope's nose", are not mentioned at all. Oysters are simply the two small, oyster-shaped pieces of dark meat that lie on either side of a whole bird's backbone. The "Pope's Nose" is the fatty, tail.

In my family, my Aunt would kill anyone who tried to get her Pope's Nose, and there were debates about who would get the oysters and wings. It was decided if you got an oyster one year, the next year, you got a wing, and so on.

I usually just leave the turkey thighs in one piece for the people who really like dark meat, like me. That way, there are six pieces for dark meat, the two wings (one is MINE), the two thighs, and the two legs (my kid always wants one), and the back with the oysters, I sneak off and eat myself.
Richard Rumley - Nov 19, 2017
Must be a northern thing. From the deep South where I am from no one cuts turkey this way. Great presentation though, just does not translate well to the various ways we eat our turkey on both Thanksgiving Day and afterwards.
Penny Wells - Nov 19, 2017
It seems like more and more people are getting it.....My brother saw me do this one year at Thanksgiving .....been doing it this way ever since.....always cut meat against the grain....only way to do that is take the breast off the bird....
Pattie Sykes - Nov 19, 2017
There's ALWAYS that one person.
Janet Iagulli - Dec 19, 2016
Hey Sue: To each a bone!!
Delores Thames - Nov 21, 2016
I will certainly try this on Thursday, thanks for the presentation, looks easy.
Susan Ward - Nov 21, 2016
I've never seen turkey cut like this! It just looks wrong. Where are the nice wide slices of breast meat? And the thigh meat looks shredded. This is NOT the right way to carve a turkey!
Cheryl Darr - Nov 21, 2016
Nice! You make it look easy!
Healthy, Flavorful Recipes For The New Year

Healthy, Flavorful Recipes for the New Year

Kitchen Crew

The holiday season is a time for indulgence... and, oh boy, did I indulge. I don't regret the pieces of cake and all the cookies, but it's time to reset...

30 Savory Chili Recipes

30 Savory Chili Recipes

Kitchen Crew @JustaPinch

Bake a batch of cornbread, gather your favorite toppings and dig into a bowl of the ultimate winter comfort food.

10 Easy Crock Pot Meals Recipe

10 Easy Crock Pot Meals

Kitchen Crew @JustaPinch

Have we mentioned how much we love our Crock Pot? Because goodness gracious do we ever love our Crock Pot. Making a slow cooker dinner is just such an easy...